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Monday, 24 June 2013 10:42

Malta: Interview with Amber (MESC 2011-2013)

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In the next couple of weeks, more interviews will be appearing during the week as the editorial team at escflashmalta.com has been in touch with the committee of the Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza securing a talk with all of the twenty-finalists in the established category. Nevertheless, as those plans commence, the original summer series of interviews continues today with none other than Amber, a three time finalist at the Malta Eurovision Song Contest, a backing vocalist for Malta at the Pan-European competition as well as a guest performer with a number of artists, she is one of the fastest rising stars in the local music scene.

At just eighteen years of age, you reached the finals of the Malta Eurovision Song Contest for the very first time with the track Catch 22 composed by Ray Agius to the lyrics of Godwin Sant. Whilst the final result was somewhat dull in comparison to the whole experience, you managed to pick up a signifant tele-vote, faring higher than a number of established performers including; Wayne Micallef, Claudia Faniello and Ally amongst others.  Ultimately, what did it mean to you to succeed in making it through to the final, and when there, how did it feel to be appreciated by the public?

It was a surprise to find myself competing with 2 songs during the malta eurovision considering the fact that this was my first appearance as a eurovsion participant. Making it through to the final was a big achievement for me as I was a new comer to the eurovision at that time. I felt honoured that people had believed in me and in my song.

You have already participated in the Malta Eurovision Song Contest on three occasions, achieving your best result to date in 2012 when the track Answers With Your Eyes composed by Ray Agius and penned by Godwin Sant finished in third place with only points achieved by the mixture of local and foreign juries. You were not far off in 2013 as the song In Control composed by Paul Giodimaina with lyrics by Fleur Balzan finished in fourth place. The genres of both entries were remarkably different from each other yet you performed them with relative ease. Which one of the two do you cite as your favourite and why?

I believe that I cannot compare these 2 entries as they were perferomed in different times during my life and apart from the different genres they also have a different message. Answer with your eyes is all about passion, love and betrayal whilst in control is all about being dominant and independent.As a performer I always study each and every song intensly and try to deliver the message behind the song. Therefore I do not believe that I have any preferences. However I enjoyed performing both songs to the full.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CTstdRSgRZ0

On more than one occasion, you have been the subject of severe criticism, kicking off with the appointment of backing vocalist to This Is The Night performed by Kurt Calleja at the Eurovision Song Contest in 2012 to the release of an article published the official website of the Pan-European competition saying that you were supposedly the winner of the Malta Eurovision Song Contest with the track In Control. It is important to denote that you handles both events in the best possible manner, giving the public a response which was honest and clear but nevertheless, from your own personal perspective, have such issues made you a stronger individual?

I believe that I can learn from each and every experience whether it is a good or a bad experience.  The general public has a right for the truth.  However it might not always be easy when giving an explanation as unfortunately there will still be a minority to prefer to interpret the situation in their own way. Luckily such situations have thought me that “what doesn't kill you makes you stronger”. As a performer I have learnt that these are difficult and challenging situations that I have to come across during my career, from which I always learn and look ahead.

In 2012, following your participation as a backing vocalist during the Eurovision Song Contest, you returned to another astonishing opportunity, and that was to perform with Joseph Calleja, an internationally renowned opera singer whose affiliation to the international showcase was introducing the country during the postcard preceding Glen Vella’s performance of One Life back in 2011. During the summer concert which also featured Ronan Keating and Lucio Dalla, you had the opportunity to sing the song A Thousand Years originally by Christina Perri. Why was that specific track selected and would you have done anything differently or do you believe the setup was just right?

Perfroimng with Joseph Calleja was simply perfect and I would definately leave the same set up if I had to to it all over again. It was a dream come true and I still cannot believe that I was given the opportunity to perform with such a prominant and humble artist. We had chosen the song a thousand years together after we had short listed our options. We had finalised our decision to this song as it had quite a powerful message behind it and it suited both our voices.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3GhhlQ5QtE0

In 2010, you entered the Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza for the very first time, making it through to the second phase with no less than two songs, out of which one was selected to get through to the final, that entitled Trid Taprezza composed by Ray Agius and penned by Alfred C Sant. This was your second major local festival having also participated in the Malta Hit Song Contest earlier that year with the track Take It Easy written by the same team of songwriters, finishing in fourth place. Nevertheless you managed to improve this time round coming out as a winner after a tight competition, finishing just ahead of Gloriana Arpa Belli. What does the year 2010 stand for in your mind and what is your perception on local competitions?

2010 was a total turning point in my career.  Both festivals have not only given me a boost but they have also given my name a recognition and also gave me a clear picture of what i wanted to establish in my career. Our islands inhibt people with talent. I believe that professional local competition will show case various talents and  not only provide the artists with exposure but also with experience.

escflashmalta.com had the pleasure of being the first to publish the video to the track So Good written and performed by Matt Mercieca (Muxu) but nevertheless, you feature heavily in various parts, predominantly within the chorus. The track, a mixture of pop and r’n’b is somewhat well suited to your vocals as attributed by general comments of readers of our portal as well as comments on viral website, YouTube. What could you tell us about the collaboration and would you consider working together once more, maybe even for the Eurovision Song Contest, following his success with Davinia and her track Betrayed earlier this year?

Working with Muxu is always a fun and remarkable experience. He is a very talented artist with fresh and unique ideas.When working with Muxu I can give my own interpretation to the song and he even considers my own ideas. 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FwXCk0cjyio

During last years’ edition of the Malta Eurovision Song Contest, your third place result was attributed thanks to the support of juries, as the public failed to award you any points unfortunately. We have recently spoken in favour of the professional jury panel for selecting Tomorrow co-written by Boris Cezek and Dean Muscat with vocals by Gianluca to represent Malta at the Eurovision Song Contest, having obtained the nations’ best result since 2005. Do you believe that the public are still entitled to have a say in the final result or do you think that the jury should make the decision?

Although during my last year's participation I did not receive any public votes I still fully agree that the general public together with the jury deserve a say in the final result. After all the winner will be representing the country and its citizens. 

Would you like to say anything to our readers at escflashmalta.com

I would like to thank the readers for their constant support throughout my career.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4WGv0lBPkto

Last modified on Monday, 24 June 2013 10:58